- Paperback: 304 pages
- Publisher: Mariner Books; 1 edition (2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0156028352
- ISBN-13: 978-0156028356
- Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.7 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 1,396 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,549 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Color Purple 1st Edition
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Novel by Alice Walker, published in 1982. It won a Pulitzer Prize in 1983. A feminist novel about an abused and uneducated black woman's struggle for empowerment, the novel was praised for the depth of its female characters and for its eloquent use of black English vernacular. -- The Merriam-Webster Encyclopedia of Literature --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From the Back Cover
The Color Purple is the story of two sistersone a missionary to Africa and the other a child wife living in the Southwho remain loyal to one another across time, distance, and silence. Beautifully imagined and deeply compassionate, this classic of American literature is rich with passion, pain, inspiration, and an indomitable love of life.
"Intense emotional impact . . . Indelibly affecting . . . Alice Walker is a lavishly gifted writer."The New York Times Book Review
"Places Walker in the company of Faulkner."The Nation
"Superb . . . A work to stand beside literature of any time and place."San Francisco Chronicle
"The Color Purple is an American novel of permanent importance."Newsweek
"Marvelous characters . . . A story of revelation . . . One of the great books of our time."--Essence
[banner] Winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award
Bestselling novelist Alice Walker is also the author of three collections of short stories, three collections of essays, six volumes of poetry and several children's books. Her books have been translated into more than two dozen languages. Born in Eatonton, Georgia, Walker now lives in northern California.
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This reading however, I was more struck by Walker's prose. Some complain of the difficulty of the dialect, but I found the opposite — perhaps because I tend to 'hear' the language of books and am a slow reader because of it. Walker's use of the dialect makes the book sing with the rhythms and metaphors of a culture. The reader can 'hear' Celie's growth, and listen to the world Celie in habits through her language.
There is a brilliance to Walker for daring to write in the Black vernacular of the early 20th Century and daring the reader to read it. Had her story not been so powerful, so resonate, many would have dismissed the novel. But Walker proved that good story can overcome bias and cultural differences.
Celie. It all starts with Celie. She is 14. She is abused and raped by her father, gets pregnant twice, "gets big", in her own words. She doesn't understand what is happening to her, why. And so she writes letters to God. She is poor. She is black. She is married off to the man she doesn't love, the man who beats her, degrades her, abuses her. All she has is her letters, first to God, then to Nettie, her sister. But not all is bad. Not everything. She has a close friend. She learns things. She overcomes her fears. She gains strength where one wouldn't think to look, and she isn't broken. So many have tried to break her, but couldn't. She learns to forgive, to love, to be. To believe. To live. That's all any of us want. Live. Be loved. Be happy. I don't know what other books shows it so well, makes you feel, with your skin, with your bones. It's hard to writ about it, it's so big. Read it, see for yourself. This is not a book. It's a gift.
It took me a little bit to get used to the book being written in letters to God, or between the sisters. And I liked Celie's letters more than Nettie's, but I think that was more because we spent the first half of the book was strictly from Celie's POV and I had developed such an attachment to her.
I love Celie, and in ways, I can relate to her journey of finding herself, standing up for herself, and learning to not take s*** from anyone.
This book and it's characters are inspiring and lovable! I'm so happy it was picked for February's book for Our Shared Shelf.